United upbeat about home game against Swallows

2012-10-16 00:00

THE club is desperate to win its first major trophy, and if Maritzburg United are to taste silverware this season, it will need to happen in either the Telkom Knockout or Nedbank Cup.

The former kicks off this weekend and United have been drawn at home against Moroka Swallows this Saturday night, in what is a tantalising fixture, with both clubs having made impressive starts to the season.

Swallows sit third on the PSL table, level on points with United in fifth, and are the reigning MTN8 champions. The sides also met on the final day of last season at Harry Gwala, where Gordon Igesund’s Swallows beat United and, for just a moment, thought they had done enough to be crowned PSL champions.

That was a humdinger of a match, and Saturday night’s affair promises to dish up something similar.

“We are at the stage now where we know that we can beat whoever we play against, so we treat every match as a cup match,” United’s Byrone Hendricks told The Witness yesterday.

“We know that they are a side in good form but we are very happy to have been drawn at home — it cuts out the travelling and we get to play in front of our own supporters.”

Last season’s regular centre back, Hendricks has found a new role in the United starting lineup in recent weeks as a holding midfielder.

Coach Ernst Middendorp seems thrilled with Hendricks’s ability in the pivotal position, and he appears to be slowly moving ahead of Michael Morton in Middendorp’s pecking order.

“I feel very comfortable there and I used to play in the same position when I was at Santos,” said Hendricks. “But I will play wherever the coach wants me to and I’ll just keep giving my best.”

“We feel this is a winnable competition, but we need to take it one game at a time and not get carried away.”

Saturday’s match kicks off at 8.15 pm and will be televised on SuperSport Blitz.

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